A new day has dawned for the Carolina Panthers franchise under head coach Frank Reich. With the picks they made in the 2023 NFL Draft, they should be able to put their best foot forward on the path ahead.
Want to see how the Panthers graded out during the 2023 NFL Draft? Then come check out our full Carolina Panthers draft grades. You can also see the entire 2023 NFL Draft results.
Carolina Panthers Draft Picks by Round in 2023
- Round 1 | Pick 1 overall (from CHI)
Bryce Young, QB, Alabama
- Round 2 | Pick 39 overall
Jonathan Mingo, WR, Ole Miss
- Round 3 | Pick 80 (from PIT)
DJ Johnson, EDGE, Oregon
- Round 4, Pick 114 overall
Chandler Zavala, G, NC State
- Round 5, Pick 145 overall
Jammie Robinson, S, Florida State
How Many Draft Picks Did the Panthers Have in the 2023 NFL Draft?
The Panthers ended up with only five picks in the 2023 NFL Draft, one each within the first five rounds. Going into the event, Carolina did not have picks in either Rounds 6 or 7, and it stayed that way throughout the three-day showcase.
Who Did the Panthers Draft in 2023?
Despite the limited amount of picks, the Panthers did own the No. 1 overall pick, which they acquired from the Chicago Bears by trading away the No. 9 overall selection, the 61st pick, a 2024 first-rounder, a 2025 second-rounder, and wide receiver DJ Moore. After early speculation that Carolina would use the first pick on QB C.J. Stroud, the Panthers apparently were set on Bryce Young all along.
Both of the Panthers’ original picks in Rounds 6 and 7 were dealt for veterans. In October 2021, Carolina sent its 2023 sixth-round pick to New England in exchange for cornerback Stephon Gilmore. Meanwhile, the Panthers sent their seventh-round pick and a 2024 sixth-round selection to the Jacksonville Jaguars for wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. ahead of the 2022 campaign.
The acquisition of Young as a presumptive franchise QB gave the Panthers’ class a visible facelift, but Carolina also made use of its sparse capital in the rounds to come. On offense, Jonathan Mingo profiles as an excellent weapon for Young, and Chandler Zavala could factor into the starting guard rotation on the blocking front.
MORE: History of Carolina Panthers First-Round Draft Picks
On defense, the Panthers added a versatile, physical safety presence in Jammie Robinson. Meanwhile, on the edge, they acquired DJ Johnson, a raw but tools-rich complement to Brian Burns, who could find his stride in Ejiro Evero’s scheme.
All of the Panthers’ latter four selections have a chance to make a difference in Year 1 under Reich’s oversight. But the legacy of Carolina’s 2023 NFL Draft class ultimately falls on the shoulders of Young himself.
Young doesn’t quite have the elite tools expected from a No. 1 overall pick. Of the top four QBs — Young, Stroud, Anthony Richardson, and Will Levis — it can be argued that Young has the weakest arm.
Nevertheless, Young won over the Panthers’ brass with his elite creation capacity, his it-factor in chaotic situations, and his sharp processing and attention to detail. He carries himself the way a franchise QB should, and that should help him succeed.